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Several Works Are Added to the Art Gallery's Permanent Collection
02.15.13 |

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A graphite drawing, a gelatin silver print photograph, a “charcoal painting,” and two oil paintings are the newest additions to the College’s permanent art collection at the Suzanne H. Arnold Art Gallery.

This fall, a drawing of the LVC campus in the 1940s or 1950s by Florence Starr Taylor (1904–1991) was given to the College by community and Gallery member Gerald Collins in memory of Eli Sidler. Sidler, the Gallery's youngest member who frequently visited with his parents, Bret and Susan, passed away this summer at the age of 16 after a long battle with cancer. The drawing, which depicts the College campus in an earlier time, serves as a poignant reminder of the history of LVC as well as of a very special member.

Taylor, who began her career as a newspaper staff artist, became a decades-long fixture in the visual arts culture of Lancaster County. She is probably best known for her illustrations of Amish life, but underpinning all her work was an extraordinarily deft ability to capture the reality of the observable world with lively gestural marks.

With support from the Pauline and Richard Charles Endowment Fund, the Gallery purchased Chicago, a gelatin silver print from 1952 by the American photographer Aaron Siskind (1903–1991). The photograph is a prime example of the influence of the New York School on Siskind’s hybrid approach to photography. The painterly, abstract qualities of the image almost overwhelm the hard-focused details and textures of architectural surfaces.

The Gallery also purchased an untitled “charcoal painting” by the American artist Frank Mura, who was born in Alsace in 1861. Living the kind of international life shared by many artists of his era, Mura is best known today for his highly experimental blurring of the line between painting and drawing. From a distance, our Mura is a perfectly readable landscape, a charged atmosphere of light and shadow, but up close it dissolves into a surface of graceful washes of charcoal, enlivened by erasure marks and subtle traces of the artist’s fingertips. Both Siskind’s Chicago and Mura’s land- scape will be featured in the Gallery’s upcoming exhibition, "Intersection: Painting, Drawing, and Photography."

The Art Association of Harrisburg generously donated two oil paintings by Li Hidley (1921–2003), Obsolete Visa, c. 1970, and Kabuki, from the 1980s. Hidley famously taught and curated at the association from 1979 until his death. Color, shape, texture, and gesture dominate his work, but he was also well known for constructing dreamlike spaces that invite viewer interpretation, a testimony to the artist’s lifelong fascination with Carl Jung.

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